dcsimg

Clinical Laboratory Technologist

Job Duties

Clinical laboratory technologists are responsible for complex medical tests that are of a chemical, biological, hematological, immunologic, microscopic, or bacteriologic nature. Using microscopes, they examine blood, tissue, and other bodily materials. They determine the presence of bacteria, fungi parasites, or other types of microorganisms by creating cultures from bodily fluids or tissue samples. They determine such things as blood glucose and cholesterol levels by analyzing the results of these various tests. They match blood samples for transfusion. They are responsible for setting up and overseeing testing programs and procedures. Some supervise the work of clinical laboratory technicians.

Tests from clinical laboratories are an integral part of the process of detection, diagnosis, and treatment of various diseases. Clinical laboratory technologists operate various types of automated equipment and instruments that are capable of executing many different tests at one time. They also use microscopes, cell counters, and other sophisticated laboratory equipment. In recent years, their work has become more and more automated. This has changed the nature of their activities, decreasing the amount of time they spend completing hands-on tasks and increasing the analytical aspects of their jobs.

Job Skills

Clinical laboratory technologists need to be able to pay extremely close attention to detail, as tiny differences in test results can substantially alter the diagnosis and treatment of diseases. They should have good manual dexterity and color vision. They must have good analytical judgment and be able to work well when pressure is high. In addition, computer skills are becoming increasingly important in the automated environment in which they work.

Income

In 2002, clinical laboratory technologists earned a median annual salary of $42,910. Earnings ranged from the lowest 10%, who earned less than $30,530, to the highest 10%, who earned more than $58,000. The following shows the median earnings for the industries employing the highest numbers of clinical laboratory technologists:

  • General medical and surgical hospitals -- $43,340
  • Medical and diagnostic laboratories -- $42,020
  • Offices of physicians -- $38,690

Training and Education

Most entry-level clinical laboratory technologist positions require a bachelor's degree in medical technology or life sciences. However, it is possible to obtain employment with specialized and on-the-job training. The Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act requires all technologists who perform certain advanced tests to have at least an associate degree. Bachelor's degree programs are found at universities and hospitals and include courses in chemistry, biological sciences, microbiology, mathematics, statistics, and specialized clinical laboratory courses. Most programs also include courses in business, management, and computers.

There are 467 educational programs in the U.S. that are fully accredited by the National Association Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). The Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs and the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools also accredit programs. In some States, clinical laboratory technologists are required to be licensed or registered. Certification is voluntary, but usually required by employers. Clinical laboratory technologists can advance to supervisory positions in laboratory work or become chief medical or clinical laboratory technologists or laboratory managers in hospitals. Advancement usually happens faster with a graduate degree in medical technology or the life sciences.

Employment

In 2002, clinical laboratory technologists, including technicians held about 297,000 jobs. More than 50% worked in hospitals. Most of the rest worked in offices of physicians and in medical and diagnostic laboratories.

Job Outlook

Between 2002 and 2012, employment of clinical laboratory technologists is expected to increase about as fast as the average. New types of tests and an aging population will keep demand high for this type of work. Job opportunities will be excellent because the number of job seekers will be lower than the number of job openings. Employment will grow faster in medical and diagnostic laboratories, offices of physicians, and other health care services, although most workers will continue to be employed by hospitals.

For more information on becoming a clinical laboratory technologist, please see our directory of schools offering Medical Training.


Clinical Laboratory Technologist Training

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
            • Nursing Degree Programs from Grand Canyon University's College of Nursing & Health Care Professions
            • Degree Variety: GCU offers a full-spectrum of nursing programs including bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees, as well as post-master’s certificates.
            • The baccalaureate degree in nursing and master's degree in nursing at Grand Canyon University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (http://www.aacn.nche.edu-accreditation).
            • GCU provides a Christian environment that provides an opportunity for you to embrace a holistic approach to caring for patients: physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
            • Depending on the degree you choose, you could take online, evening, or on-campus classes. Speak with an enrollment counselor to discuss your options!
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Medical Assisting
            Milan Institute , Palm Desert
            • Offers career programs in accounting, cosmetology, massage therapy, physical fitness training, and more.
            • Provides hands-on training led by instructors who have relevant, on-the-job experience.
            • Each campus features a public salon and spa for student practice.
            • Campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET) and Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 11 campuses across California, Texas, Nevada and Idaho, as well as 8 additional Milan Institute of Cosmetology campuses.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Veterinary Technology Alternate Route - Certificate
            • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
            • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
            • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
            • 3 campuses in Southern California.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Associate of Science in Medical Assisting Science
            • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
            • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
            • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
            • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
            • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Professional Medical Assistant
            • A part of the Select Education Group (SEG).
            • Offers several scholarship and financial aid opportunities for students who qualify.
            • California campuses accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), and accreditation for the Salem campus from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
            • 4 Campuses located in Clovis, Modesto, and Redding in California, and Salem, Oregon.
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            MS in Management/Healthcare Administration

            Work toward your graduate degree with New England College Online. We offer master's degree programs in management, accounting, and public policy that can be completed 100% online.

            • Online Courses
            Medical Assisting
            Unitek College , Sacramento
            • Offers programs in nursing, medical assisting, pharmacy technology, dental assisting, and more.
            • Six Campuses across Northern CA: Fremont, San Jose, Sacramento, S. San Francisco, Hayward, and Concord.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges, with programmatic approvals from the California Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians and the Board of Registered Nursing.
            • Approved by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with an A+ rating since 2010.
            Show more [+]
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Associate of Arts in Healthcare Management

            See What’s Possible When You Earn a Degree at Florida Tech 100% Online

            Whatever your motivation for considering an undergraduate or graduate degree, Florida Tech offers programs online that can meet your needs. Here are a few reasons Florida Tech may be the right choice for you.

            • Online Courses
            Graduate Certificate in Healthcare Management

            Change the World with American University

            Be a part of something bigger than yourself. At American University, we strive to help you develop your professional interests and indulge in your passion for making a difference. Our online degree programs allow you to gain the advanced skills for active leadership in a variety of fields.

            Set Yourself Apart at American University

            At American University, our smart, passionate and engaged students and faculty focus their knowledge to create meaningful change. Our strengths in international service and public affairs inspire our sense of social responsibility and a dedication to cultural and intellectual diversity. We're defined by our global perspective, practical idealism and a dedication to public service.

            • Online Courses
            Doctor of Education - Nursing Education
            • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Implements a one-to-one teaching model, partnering one student with one faculty member in each course.
            • 100% of faculty members hold doctoral degrees.
            • No physical residency requirements, allowing students to pursue their degree online.
            • Committed to innovation, diversity, excellence, and accountability since its founding in 1996.
            • Offers several programs in business, education, psychology, and more.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits